From maintaining sanctuary status in the face of threats, to upholding the terms of the Paris climate accord, cities continue to lead the resistance. At the same time, there is much work to be done to advance equity within their own boundaries. Today’s update highlights our op-ed on the need for cities to resist national policy while advancing equity locally, our latest engagement in Buffalo, growing momentum for equitable development in Fairfax, and our upcoming webinar launching the All-In Cities policy toolkit.
Resistance Is Not Enough: Cities Must Move the Needle on Racial Economic Equity
Last week, the New York Times published an op-ed by Tracey Ross, associate director of the All-In Cities initiative, and Sarah Treuhaft, senior director, describing how cities can pair the spirit of resistance with homegrown policy solutions to tackle the ongoing challenges of segregation and racial economic exclusion. When cities insist upon equity, they explain, “it doesn’t just benefit the most vulnerable people in our country; it benefits all Americans.” Check out the full piece here. Also, please join PolicyLink and partners Thursday, June 15, 1:00 p.m. Pacific / 4:00 p.m. Eastern for a Twitter chat to discuss how cities can move the needle on racial economic equity by following @Policylink and #allincities.
Buffalo, NY: Health Equity and the Path to Inclusive Prosperity
On May 8, in partnership with Open Buffalo, through support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, we released a data profile and policy brief, Health Equity: The Path to Inclusive Prosperity in Buffalo. Our community partners – Open Buffalo, Partnership for the Public Good, and PUSH Buffalo – hosted a release event for dozens of community members and leaders, where we had an opportunity to brief the public on our findings and discuss recommendations going forward. Councilmember David Rivera underscored one of the report’s recommendations by discussing the need to advance inclusionary zoning in the city. The event closed with an expert panels of local leaders, which included Jessica Bauer Walker of Community Health Worker Network of Buffalo; Dr. Gale R. Burstein, Commissioner of Health, Erie County; Sam Magavern, of Partnership for the Public Good; and Dennice Barr of the Community First Alliance.
Fairfax, VA: Equitable Development
In 2015, PolicyLink published a profile of Fairfax County, Virginia which informed the development of the “One Fairfax” resolution to develop and implement a data-driven racial and social equity policy. Building on this work, PolicyLink recently advised Fairfax leaders on equity criteria for developers as they embark on a major, multi-departmental redevelopment project to transform the Original Mount Vernon High School and George Washington RECenter sites (totaling approximately 42-acres) into a 21st century to create a thriving environment that serves the surrounding communities. The RFP for this project can be found here.
Save The Date: All-In Cities Toolkit Launch
On July 13 at 1:00 p.m. ET, we will be hosting a webinar to launch and preview the All-In Cities policy toolkit, an online resource designed to help leaders inside and outside city government identify, understand, and choose targeted policy solutions to advance racial economic inclusion and equitable growth. The toolkit will provide examples of specific policies that local leaders can adapt to their own economic and political contexts; relevant research and data resources; and model policy and campaign language. Click here to register.